Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 51

The Naturalist’s Eye
By Marcia Bonta

Louisiana Waterthrush
S
ometime in early April I hear the ringing song of a Louisiana waterthrush near our Plummer’s Hollow stream. One of the first neotropical migrant birds to return, he comes winging in from as far south as northern South America and southern Cuba. This handsome brown warbler, his whitish breast streaked with brown, looks more like a thrush than a warbler. Along with his congener, the northern waterthrush, the Louisiana waterthrush wades on long, pink legs in streams and bobs his tail and rear like a spotted sandpiper. I spend a lot of time along our mileand-a-half, first order stream, watching and listening to these fascinating birds. By mid-April there are usually four males staked out along the stream, singing, defending their long, narrow territories and courting the returning females. It’s important to catch their singing early, though, because as soon as they pair up, the males slow down and almost stop singing. A favorite place for waterthrushes is below our Waterthrush Bench, and last spring their activity was especially interesting. On April 18 I watched two singing waterthrushes bobbing their tails as each one tried to stay above the other when they landed on mossy logs, tree branches, and in the stream itself. They moved several hundred feet upstream before flying back down stream, and I wondered if they were two males in a territorial dispute or a pair involved in a courtship ritual. The last day of April, as I sat on Waterthrush Bench, I watched a waterthrush as it poked about in the puddles of a backwater, pulling aside rotted leaves in what ornithologists call ”leaf pulls” as it searched for food. Although 89 to 98 percent of waterthrush feeding consists of quick, jab-like strokes called “picks,” “leaf pull” is an alternate strategy. In both cases, they are searching for aquatic insects and invertebrates. According to one study in northeastern Connecticut, before the leaves emerge waterthrushes engaged in “leaf pull” 42 percent of the time and “picks” 54 percent, but “leaf pulls” decreased and “picks” increased as their breeding season progressed and
51

MAY  2012 



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012

Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012
History of the Whitetail
26 Days for a Gobbler
I Took a Stand
Enemies Among Us
The Smile Says It All
Wild Turkey Trivia
Wild Turkey Cures A Heartache
First VPA-HIP Habitat Project Nears Completion
Field Notes
Conservation News
Off the Wire
Another View
The Naturalist’s Eye
Fun Game
Straight from the Bowstring
Lock, Stock & Barrel
Crossings
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - Cover2
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - History of the Whitetail
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 2
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 26 Days for a Gobbler
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 4
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 5
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - I Took a Stand
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 7
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - Enemies Among Us
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 9
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 10
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 11
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 12
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 13
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 14
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 15
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - The Smile Says It All
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 17
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 18
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 19
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - Wild Turkey Trivia
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 21
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 22
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 23
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - Wild Turkey Cures A Heartache
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 25
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 26
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 27
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 28
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 29
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - First VPA-HIP Habitat Project Nears Completion
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 31
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - Field Notes
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 33
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 34
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 35
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 36
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - Conservation News
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 38
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 39
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 40
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 41
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 42
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 43
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 44
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 45
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 46
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - Off the Wire
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - Another View
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 49
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 50
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - The Naturalist’s Eye
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 52
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 53
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - Fun Game
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - Straight from the Bowstring
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 56
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 57
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 58
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 59
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - Lock, Stock & Barrel
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 61
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 62
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - 63
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - Crossings
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - BB1
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - BB2
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - Cover3
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2012 - Cover4
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